Internal Revenue Service United States Department of the Treasury
Level Basic Advanced Military International

Filing Requirements

What to File

Nonresident Aliens

Nonresident students, teachers, or trainees who are temporarily in the U.S. in F, J, M, or Q immigration status must file returns if they have income that is subject to withholding, even if no tax was withheld.

Nonresident aliens claiming treaty benefits must file a return.

The requirement to file a return has generally been eliminated for nonresident aliens who earn wages effectively connected with a trade or business when those wages are less than the amount of one personal exemption. See Publication 4011 or for the current year's exemption amount.


Even if students are exempt from filing a return, they must file Form 8843 to show their exempt status. Students and scholars who are not required to file a return should do so if they are eligible for a refund. Refer to the lesson on Form 8843 for more information.